Wet spindles into mills

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Stuart
Senior User
I purchased some wet 3x3x12 spindles to make into pepper/salt mills. I've turned them into round blanks and now I'm wondering how long they need to dry out. Still new to turning hence the question. Do I need to get a meter and measure the moisture and wait until a desired value? Can I turn and make them wet? What are my next steps? :cool:
 

Michael Mathews

Michael
Corporate Member
Stuart, Whenever you turn wet wood, you should always leave it oversize and thick. As the wood dries it will move and warp. If you turned the spindles to the finished size you need, you may be disappointed after they dry. They may also not move too much and may still be usable, you never know. Either way, you need to let them dry. Best thing to do is pack them with the chips you turned out of them and put them into a brown paper back and put them on the shelf for about 2 to 3 months. You can check the weight to see how much is lost and when they stop losing weight, then they're dry.
 

walnutjerry

Jerry
Senior User
You really need to let them dry. The drying process can be sped up with the use of a microwave. Lots of articles on the web that provide information on doing this.
 

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Stuart
Senior User
I will let them dry. I just cleaned out my dust collection bin, so I have bags of shavings to put these into. Thanks guys for the advice!
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
As wet wood dries it will go a little oval due to the shrinkage difference in the growth rings. The oval differential may be small in a 3 inch turning but it may be enough to change the fit of the pepper mill hardware. For projects that small I usually get kiln dried wood and skip all the chances for disappointment.
 

photostu

Stuart
Senior User
I drill a hole all the way through mine, slightly smaller than what would be needed for the final product. Then I let them dry until they are below 12% moisture content.
View attachment 190120
These are gorgeous, really love the spalted ones. After attempting to duplicate a more intricate design for a pair, this style seems like the best bet for mass production. Do you mind sharing where you get the hardware for this style?
 

TENdriver

TENdriver
User
Not sure what others use on their CrushGrind mechanisms, but I ended up measuring the parts and buying a metric bit.
 

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